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Returned for Re-Grooving

(with apologies to The Firesign Theatre)

Back in the early 90’s, when I worked at TMCCC (in offices located above a shopping mall), I would sometimes take my lunch in the mall, itself.  And visit the (chain) bookstore.

During one bookstore visit, I remember seeing a new book entitled The Politically-Correct Dictionary.  This was a fairly new term in my lexicon, and I picked it up to page through, thinking it was a satirical book.  It wasn’t.  It was dead serious.

I’ve blocked most of the definitions from my mind, largely because they were stupid and/or offensive to me.
One that sticks in my brain though was GRAFFITI (n.) People’s art.  (progressively dismissing private property rights and vandalism crime in one fell swoop)

Fast forward to an entry courtesy of WyBlog (May 21, 2012).  It seems Dharun Ravi, the roommate of Tyler Joe Clementi McAllister, who was embarrassed by Mr. Ravi, outing him on a secret camera, was convicted.
Mr. McAllister committed suicide, allegedly because of this outing.

Dharun Ravi will serve a 30-day jail term, beginning on May 31.
Ravi will have a three year probation sentence. He will also have to complete 300 hours of community services, and attend a counseling program relative to cyber bullying and alternate lifestyles.
He will also have to pay $10,000 to the probation department. The sum will be allotted to a facility dedicated to victims of bias crimes.

Now I’m no advocate of gay-bashing, or outing, or publicly embarrassing anyone.  It’s very sad this young man ended his life.  And I find Mr. Ravi’s behavior beyond contemptible.  But, equally contemptible is a court system which attempts to brainwash a citizen because he isn’t ‘thinking correctly’.  It’s like this clown preacher who’s been on the news, stating all the gays should be rounded up and put into camps, so they will eventually die off from no procreation.  He’s a complete idiot.

But in The United States, the First Amendment of the Bill of Rights enumerates specific natural rights, including free speech, containing within it the right to be complete idiots.  If we allow government to ‘tweak’ the thinking of the most egregiously offensive or narrow-minded of us, who’s to say the next step isn’t ‘he’s a gun person (or a libertarian), he needs reprogramming’?

This is why I Hate Hate Crime.  Whether the perpetrator stole the loaf of bread because he didn’t like the color of the baker’s skin, or because he was hungry, or was just a thief, should make no difference.  Theft is theft.

And government ‘counseling’ in the name of political correctness is brainwashing.

“I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.”  – Voltaire

h/t J, Chris Wysocki

The Birther Kerfluffle

I wasn’t going to address this, but it just won’t go away.  My State (Arizona) just passed legislation stating all Presidential candidates must show proof of citizenship to be on the ballot.  Apparently the extract provided by the White House is in question.  There are some folks out there who believe the current President is ineligible to hold the office, as the U.S. Constitution states, with regard to qualifications:

The United States Constitution, Article II Section I states:
No person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President; neither shall any Person be eligible to that Office who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty-five Years, and been fourteen Years a Resident within the United States.

The big question, of course, is the definition of natural born Citizen.  The constitution is vague on this point, and there have been (and continue to be) court cases with regard to this very question.  After all, if the duly-elected President isn’t qualified, his Vice-President (who arrived on his electoral coat tails) is also.  And every law signed by him and every appointee would be disqualified.

So this is a very important question.

This is not the first time this issue has been raised:

Chester A. Arthur (1829–1886), 21st president of the United States, was rumored to have been born in Canada.[59][60] This was never demonstrated by his Democratic opponents, although Arthur Hinman, an attorney who had investigated Arthur’s family history, raised the objection during his vice-presidential campaign and after the end of his presidency. Arthur was born in Vermont to a Vermont-born mother and a father from Ireland, who was naturalized as a U.S. citizen in 1843, 14 years after Chester was born. Despite the fact that his parents took up residence in the United States somewhere between 1822 and 1824,[61] Arthur additionally began to claim between 1870 and 1880[62] that he had been born in 1830, rather than in 1829, which only caused minor confusion and was even used in several publications.[63] Arthur was sworn in as president when President Garfield died after being shot. (Wikipedia)

A Natural Born Citizen is one who is born of citizen parents. A child born abroad to two US citizen parents is a natural-born citizen: Provided, That at least one citizen parent had a prior residence in the United States or one of its outlying possessions. U.S. Code: Title 8, 1401. (

Of course, documentation has been provided to the courts and the media demonstrating the President was born in Hawaii, after it had become a State.  But the questions continue.

  • Does the requirement that both parents be US citizens apply?  (The President’s father was a British Kenyan subject)
  • Is an extract taken from the original birth certificate document sufficient?  Is it best evidence?

And now a document surfaces further confusing the issue

This is a promotional brochure from the President’s then publisher, extolling his background and education to sell a book that was never published.  The explanation provided is that Mr. Obama, on more than one occasion, padded his resume-bio to sound a bit more exotic.

I suspect this matter will eventually reach the Supreme Court.  And, whatever the decision, I’m certain Congress will then act to more specifically define natural born Citizen.

Until then, we must deal with the cards we’re dealt.

h/t, Wikipedia,

I Love the Police, But…


I love the police.  My Dad’s dad had been a Marine before WWI (!), then transitioned to work as a railroad cop.  Became a Lieutenant in the NY, NH & H Railroad.  Was one tough son-of-a-bitch.  My own dad worked as a RR cop for a short time, then went to the Rhode Island State Police Academy.  Among other things he had to learn how to safely dump an Indian motorcycle @ 60 mph!  He, unfortunately, didn’t make it through the academy.  Ended up as a coach/schoolteacher.  Even though I was disabled from age 12, I took it upon myself to at least try to get on a police force.  Family duty and all that.  When I was younger and more fit (translation –  thinner and less infirmed) I ran the Phoenix Police Academy obstacle course @ South Mountain on behalf of a small town local PD.  Never made it to recruit, but at least ran the whole course!  And I ended up with my A.A. degree in Administration of Justice from Mesa Community College, with high distinction.  My point being police stuff is in my blood.

But, I was taught the job of the police is to protect the public and their rights.  This is what makes us different from other countries where their job is to keep the upper class safe and keep the regular guy down.

But there’s been a change in attitude of local police since I graduated in 1975.  Paramilitary units, SWAT raids poorly executed, more of that us versus them attitude.  And we are the ‘them’.

Here’s a link to news stories regarding police abuse:  Injustice Everywhere.  (Of course, just because an arrestee says the police acted inappropriately, doesn’t mean they did!)

Claire Wolfe of Living Freedom has an excellent post regarding how to behave in police custody.  More valuable today than ever.  I’ve never been arrested, but as a regular carrier/possessor of lethal instruments, there’s a real possibility it could happen one day.  The Arresting Officer isn’t going to care that I come from a police family or have a police science degree.

The Lesson is this:  If arrest happens to you, Keep Your Mouth Shut, except when Demanding a Lawyer!

h/t Clair Wolfe, Injustice Everywhere

I’m SHOCKED – part of an ongoing series…

Weasel Zippers links to a Big Government article extolling the costs associated with the nefarious various Occupy Wall Street protests nationwide.

A tally based on press reports nationwide puts the total at nearly $30 million:

Total: $29,110,827

Now, to be fair, a comparison must be equally made with the costs of those violent, nasty, racist Tea Party protesters – you know, the ones who haven’t been arrested and clean up after themselves?

Oh yeah, the Tea Party folks were billed for their Tax Day protests (at least in one city)

(CSM) November 29, 2011 –  Tea party activists in Richmond, Va., watched as liberal Occupy Wall Street protesters paid nothing to use the same park that conservatives paid $8,500 to use for three of its “tax day” rallies. So the tea partyers (sic) pushed the issue by demanding a full refund of their fees.

Welcome to the double-standard, folks.

h/t ZIP, Big Government, Christian Science Monitor

Judge Does The Right Thing…

A New York FEDERAL Judge!!!

Military Detention Law Blocked by New York Judge
A federal judge temporarily blocked enforcement of a part of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that opponents claim could subject them to indefinite military detention for activities including news reporting and political activism.
U.S. District Judge Katherine Forrest in Manhattan today ruled in favor of a group of writers and activists who sued President Barack Obama, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and the Defense Department, claiming a provision of the act, signed into law Dec. 31, puts them in fear that they could be arrested and held by U.S. armed forces. ~

~Hedges, who testified he has been a foreign news correspondent for 20 years, said he has reported on 17 groups that are on a State Department list of terrorist groups. Hedges testified that after the law was passed, he changed his dealings with groups he had reported on, Forrest said.

“I think the ruling was not only correct, but courageous and important,” Hedges said in a telephone interview yesterday.~

Go and read the specifics.

h/t Knuckledraggin’ My Life Away and news (seriously?)

Ray Chapman Academy Returns!

Massad Ayoob, self-defense firearms expert, gun writer, practitioner-of-that-which-he-preacheth tells us that the Ray Chapman Academy has returned!

Much like the instructors of yore, Ray Chapman was a god in practical shooting.  It was very sad when he passed.

Now, the school has reopened!  Head of the program now is Rich Greiner, one of Ray’s protégés

Check out Mas’ link!

…and it went off

Mother in Wash school shooting makes plea deal

The Associated Press – May 15, 2012


The mother of a 9-year-old boy who brought a gun to a Washington state school that discharged and wounded a classmate pleaded guilty on Tuesday to weapons charges under a plea deal with prosecutors, dismaying the victim’s family.

Jamie Chaffin pleaded guilty to two counts of unlawful possession of a firearm, with the state recommending a sentence of 14 months in jail, Kitsap County Deputy Prosecutor Jeremy Morris said.

Authorities had said Chaffin and her boyfriend, Douglas L. Bauer, caused the shooting through the negligence of leaving the handgun where the boy could pick it up at their house. He put the .45-caliber handgun in his backpack, and it went off Feb. 22, critically wounding Amina Kocer-Bowman.

Kocer-Bowman’s parents issued a statement saying they were disappointed by the deal.

“We want legitimate accountability for the heinous act that nearly ended her life. We want responsibility from those whose irresponsibly and negligence nearly cost us our daughter’s life,” her parents said in statement. “Finger-pointing, plea deals, and court-mandated apologies are like a slap in the face as we watch those accused receive a slap on the wrist.”

In March, Kocer-Bowman’s classmate was sentenced in March to 12 months of probation and counseling. The boy also wrote an apology letter to his classmate and apologized to her in court.

Kocer-Bowman underwent weeks of recovery at a Seattle hospital after the bullet pierced through her body.

Chaffin was originally charged with unlawful possession of a firearm and third-degree assault, which would have brought a maximum sentence of five years in prison.

Morris declined to comment on the case because it is still pending.

Does your toaster, blender, toilet, folding knife or car just go off?

Now, WHAT are The Four Rules, AGAIN?  And do firearms just go off by themselves, as if by magic?


h/t The Gun Wire (TM)

Darwin Award Candidate?

Charles Darwin

Bells A Ringing reminisces about teen-aged pranksters, and possible consequences.

And reminded me of a similar incident.

When Bob P. and I were guard supervisors (he a Captain, I his Lieutenant – woo hoo! /sarcasm) we would patrol to each of the contract guard posts and check to determine if the guard assigned was awake, alert, doing his/her job, or even there.  Sometimes, they weren’t!

One late afternoon, we went to a cafeteria-style restaurant, largely for Bob to flirt with the cashier.  This was in our area, but not a guard post.  Just a place to stop and get a bite or a soda.  And Bob liked to talk to the girls.  I was happily married, so I didn’t care.

The cashier animatedly and laughingly told us that about five minutes earlier, a masked individual had approached her and stuck a revolver in her face, and demanded money!  She laughed, because after the initial shock, she recognized the voice as that of her boyfriend!  And it was Halloween.

Good thing we weren’t early.  Bob and I would have walked in and simply shot him.

Sounds like a Darwin Award candidate to me!

h/t kx59, Southernbell

Father of the Year

The Travis McGee Reader links to a news story wherein a father calls the cops on his teen-aged son, who was using marijuana.

The money phrase:

Sooner or later the cops are going to send him back, and Father’s Day at your house is likely to be a restrained celebration.

I remember my own father threatening me with various authoritarian intervention, and as a father myself I would never have done so with my daughter.  The appropriateness/legitimacy of marijuana laws aside, TMR is correct in discussing the laziness inherent in such parenting:

Choosing to invite the po-po to handle your family dysfunction leads to problems you weren’t smart enough to think of.

Because the State is so much better at handling your family’s problems then you are.

This dad is a maroon!

h/t alongfordmick

The Debate I Didn’t Know Existed…

American Mercenary  jumps in with both combat boots to a debate about which I was unaware.
Either I didn’t think of it as an issue (closed-mindedness) or wasn’t paying attention (Condition White).
My apologies.

This issue involved Condition Three carrying and use.
(Condition Three: Chamber empty, full magazine in place, hammer down.- Jeff Cooper, Wikipedia excerpt)

Apparently, AM, Robb Allen and Tam have all weighed in.  A suggestion has been made that using Condition Three carry slows down your OODA loop, allowing for more prudent decisions when under stress.  A counterpoint is, what if your slide-cycling hand is not available, injured, or it’s immobilized?
Having trained with double-action revolver (where this debate is unnecessary) and with double-action, DAO, and single-action semiautomatics (where I never considered it an option) I don’t know what to think.
Col. Cooper said that Condition Three was necessitated for military sentry inspection, and that carrying with an empty chamber was simply an unsafe practice, as one’s sidearm wasn’t immediately ready for action.

What do you guys think?

h/t AM, Robb Allen, Tamara Keel

"Round up the usual suspects."

In Loving Memory…